War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0471 Chapter XXIII. BATTLE OF WILLIAMSBURG,VA.

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They did not fire from the works in front except occasional shots again until late in the afternoon, but about 10 o'clock they opened again from the sunken redoubt and from another still farther to our left. Finding that these shots were enfilading some of my pieces I moved my right wing forward in echelon, and by noon we had again silenced them so effectually that their next efforts to open fire about an hour later was a very weak one.

My men had now been in the open under fire not only of the guns we had silenced but of a very severe fire of the enemy's sharpshooters, for some seven hours, and were greatly fatigued. As all had been quiet for some time I rode to the rear to hasten up Captain Smith's Fourth New York Battery, which had been kept back by the bad roads and the baggage wagons of other divisions. It was while I was absent on this duty that the infantry supporting me abandoned the felled timber on my left, leaving my batteries entirely exposed on that flank. They (the enemy) came upon us over this timber, driving the men from the guns, which were badly mired, and having lost a large number of horses we were unable to bring them off. Captain Bramhall gallantly fought his pieces until the battery on his left was fairly in the hands of the enemy, when, finding that his men were exposed not only to the fire of the advancing foe but also to the return fire of his support on the right, he ordered his men to fall back. The enemy keeping possession of a portion of the felled timber on our left prevented any attempt again to work or remove these pieces.

So soon as I got Captain Smith's battery up I placed four of his guns in echelon on a know to the right of the road, just within the woods, and loaded with canister, to be ready in case the enemy should attempt to charge down the road. This was done about half an hour later. When the head of their column had approached to within some 150 yards we opened on them and effectually stopped their advance. Directly after this we suffered severely from single men of this column who had taken positions in the felled timber on the line of the road, four or five of the cannoneers falling at the advanced piece, until General Kearny furnished me with a company of sharpshooters as a support. After his charge was repelled the battery was not seriously engaged, only firing occasional shell in the direction of the works in front and on our left, which had again opened fire. At sunset, with the general's permission, I withdrew my two remaining batteries, leaving Captain Thompson, chief of artillery in Kearny's division, in charge of the position.

I regret exceedingly to be obliged to report the loss of four of Battery H's guns and one caisson, which were carried off by the enemy when they had possession. Captain Bramhall's guns were so deeply mired that they did not succeed in moving them. I have also to report the loss of 4 men killed and 2 officer and 18 enlisted men wounded, a full list of which is appended.* The enemy carried off 40 horses with the guns, and we have as many more left dead on the field, besides a number wounded and missing.

I have every reason to be satisfied with the conduct of my officers generally. Captain Webber, who only joined his command since our arrival at Ship Point, showed great bravery in urging his men up to the guns. Lieutenants Eakin and Pike fell well to the front at the first fire of the enemy. Captain Bramahll's conduct was that of an experienced officer, having his men in perfect command, and such as fully sustained his gallantry at Ball's Bluff last October. He was seconded


*Embodied in return on p.450.